The underlying and guiding philosophy of the Diploma in Software Engineering program is to promote scholarship, as well as the search for and the application of scientific knowledge through education, training, and research. The Institution is committed to pursuing this philosophy through the provision of a world-class program in Information Technology and aimed at training highly skilled and globally employable professionals.
The mission of the institution is to provide modern training to individuals and organizations through well-thought-out programs that align with their objectives while ensuring they receive value for their investments.
The goals of the program are:
- To prepare graduates for a career in Information Technology with a specialization in Software Engineering
- To expose students to a wide range of computer skills to prepare them for the job market as professionals practicing information technology in areas ranging from the design and construction of microprocessor systems, the writing of complex computer software and application systems and to design the next generation systems and application software.
- To provide students with a high-quality program that confers skills required for initial job placement or entrepreneurial engagements
The need for trained IT professionals is one of the challenges faced by the Liberian economy. The world economy is experiencing the effect of rapid globalization and the impact of the information age characterized by emerging technologies. The role of the IT field and industry can play to support the socio-economic development process has been recognized by governments worldwide, including the government of Liberia.
It has also been acknowledged that the worldwide shortage of qualified human resources in the Information Technology field had been one of the main obstacles to the deployment, exploitation, and development of ICTs to accelerate economic and social development. This problem is more felt in developing countries like Liberia than is the case in industrialized countries.
National Demand for the Program
In Liberia, the need for trained personnel of integrity, good work ethics, excellent professional skills, and positive human relations to contribute towards the realization of the country's social-economic development cannot be overemphasized. Specifically, there is an urgent need in Liberia to meet the shortfall of IT professionals with the requisite skills. This program is, therefore, designed to address the major area of manpower requirements of the nation by preparing qualified individuals for IT careers in public and private sectors of the economy.
Employment Prospects of Students (Prospective/Current)
The worldwide shortage of computer professionals is a well-known phenomenon. In Liberia, as in other countries, there is an acute shortage of qualified Information Technology personnel.
The market for IT professionals in Liberia and elsewhere is large and growing. Almost every sector needs computer personnel and as such the employment prospects of IT professionals are great in every country including Liberia. Experience from elsewhere shows that professionals in this field are in high demand and most participants in this type of program are normally offered jobs before completion. We, therefore, expect very high demand in Liberia and elsewhere for graduates of this program. Graduates can go on to pursue a professional career in Information Technology in basically any type of establishment in both the private and public sectors.
Graduates will typically be employed (whether for self or another) as IT Infrastructure Engineer, Server Specialist, System Administrator, Network Engineer, Enterprise System Administrator or Virtualization AdministratorÂ among others.
The entire program is divided in to four (4) quarters. A set of modules are taken by the students in each quarter.
- IT Foundation & Emerging Technologies (Workshop):
- This workshop is designed to enable students to explore a range of issues relating to the use of computers and other IT systems and resources (including the internet) to support activities and operations within the various sectors of the economy and society at large. These include the Business, Commerce, Government, Education, and Health sectors among others. The workshop concludes with an examination of new and promising information technologies to research and look out for.
- Computer Maintenance & Repairs:
- This module prepares participants for a career as an entry-level PC maintenance and repair technician, teaching skills such as hardware repair and replacement, Windows &, Linux operating systems troubleshooting and networking.
- Desktop Administration:
- This module teaches students how to support and configure workstations and modern desktop operating systems (Windows / Linux) in an organizational environment. Students will develop skills that include learning how to install, customize, troubleshoot, and update the latest Windows and Linux desktop operating systems, manage devices and data, configure storage and connectivity, manage policies and profiles, manage and protect devices, and finally manage apps and data.
- Computer Ethics (Workshop):
- Computer technology has significantly reshaped our lifestyles affecting the way we work, relax, treat our sick, shop, educate our young, catch criminals and even commit crimes. The effects of computing are not limited to the technological and scientific realms but extend also into the social and ethical. This workshop examines the social and ethical implications of computer technology. Its goal is to identify and formulate answers to questions that deal with the moral basis of individual responsibilities and actions, as well as with the moral underpinnings of public policy. It pays special attention to the risks of computing, individual privacy, moral and professional responsibility, ownership of intellectual property, and the prospects of a networked world.
- Network Fundamentals:
- This module introduces architectures, models, protocols, and networking elements â€“ functions needed to support the operations and priorities of Fortune 500 companies to small innovative retailers. Students get the chance to build simple local area networks (LANs). While developing a working knowledge of IP addressing schemes, foundational network security, students will be able to perform basic configurations for routers and switches.
- Server Administration:
- In this module, students learn to install and configure modern server/network operating systems, including overall administration, advanced file system concerns; and active directory services. It covers remote access, network security, fault tolerance, and network resource. It also introduces application servers and troubleshooting in a network environment.
- Technical & Business Writing for Professionals (Workshop):
- This workshop is an intensive study of and practice in writing for professional settings. Focus on the types of documents necessary to make decisions and take action on the job, such as proposals, reports, instructions, policies and procedures, e-mail messages, letters, and descriptions of products and services. Practice in individual and collaborative processes involved in the creation of ethical and efficient documents.
- Advanced Network Management:
- This module builds upon the concepts thought in the Network Fundamentals module. It covers a set of advanced topics in computer networks. The focus is on principle architectures and protocols used in modern networked systems, such as the Internet itself, wireless and mobile networks, high-performance networks, and data center networks.
- Enterprise Infrastructure Security:
- This module covers conceptual and technological aspects of network security over voice and data networks. The module deals with the analysis, design, implementation, and management issues surrounding effective network security. The intention of the module is to provide an even depth of coverage across the entire domain of the information security common body of knowledge. It is not intended to provide in-depth coverage of any particular network security topic.
- Introduction to Project Management (Workshop):
- This workshop is aimed at helping students to understand the tools and techniques of project management such as project selection methods, work breakdown structures, network diagrams, critical path analysis, and critical chain scheduling, time and cost estimates, earned value management, and motivation theory and team building.
- Entrepreneurship Development (Workshop):
- This workshop is designed to build studentsâ€™ interest in starting their own business, either as their primary income or extra income, including individual contributor businesses such as freelancers, contractors, consultants, and others. It is centered on three key aspects of entrepreneurship: the individual, their traits, skills, and attributes that make entrepreneurs successful, the business ideas, how to generate them, where to look for them, how to expand them, and how to ensure they are valid business ideas with potential to meet profit goals.
- Introduction to Cloud & Virtualization:
- This module introduces students to the Cloud and Virtualization Concepts. It explores creating a virtual machine and the benefits and drawbacks. It provides an understanding of how individuals and businesses benefit from virtualization. Students will learn how to move from a physical environment to a virtual one, describe the types of virtualization used for data centers, describe the concepts of server, network, storage, and desktop virtualization. It discusses virtualization, virtual machines, and components of popular virtualization technologies (VMWare, Hypervisor, Citrix, etc). It provides an understanding of cloud concepts such as cloud computing and popular cloud deployment models. It concludes with an overview of the major players in the cloud computing space.
- Diploma Program Project:
- Under the supervision of one or more instructors, the student is given a description of an organization, its business processes, its corporate structure, and infrastructure requirements. She is required to propose an infrastructure design according to the requirements. Once the design is approved, she will be required to implement said design and, the completed project will be presented at a technical seminar for grading.